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Outdoor Program|Campus Recreation

Outdoor Leadership Development Series


A leadership development program intended to improve competence in the backcountry and leadership in all walks of life.


Who: This series is open to all UW undergraduate and graduate students who share a passion for the outdoors. Enrollment is limited to 12 participants, with selection based on an application and interview process.

What: Both classroom and backcountry sessions will be used to provide a foundation for leading others in a wilderness environment. Each component of the series will focus on one or more of the following: improving technical skills, applying leadership methods, and obtaining medical training. 

Participants will have a chance to hear from nationally recognized guest speakers, discuss cutting edge theories and materials, participate in various types of outdoor activities, and assist on Outdoor Program trips. OLDS students will obtain a number of possible certifications including: OLDS Graduate, Leave No Trace Trainer, and Wilderness First Aid or Wilderness First Responder.

When: The year-long series runs from September through May. 

Requirements: Participants will go on one multi-day OLDS trip each semester (backpacking trip in the fall with a LNT Trainer Certification, and a winter backcountry trip in the spring semester). In the fall semester, participants perform two trip "observations" of OP trips and participate in monthly OLDS meetings. In the spring semester, participants will perform two trip "assists" and take a two-credit upper division ENR course which includes a 5-7 day small-group spring break expedition. Applicants must be able to commit to all program components, including the academic course and the spring break expedition.

The following schedule for the fall semester provides most information applicants should need to decide if they can commit to the entire program.

Cost: The series is FREE for those accepted; discounts are available to cover the costs of additional medical training and certifications (the cost of tuition for the ENR course and required book is not covered).

Applications are due by September 13, 2013. For an application, click here.

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